# Simulation Master

## Assessing Distribution Fit

When fitting a probability distribution to a set of data, we would like to know how well our distribution fitting has done to represent the underlying data.  We will dive into the nuts and bolts of assessing distribution fit. There are several methods used for assessing distribution fit.  We will divide these methods into two …

## An Example of Probabilistic Design

Traditional engineering design employs the concept of a safety factor to prevent failure.  In this article we are going to discuss, with a simple example, how probabilistic design can be used as an alternative to safety factors. Background on Safety Factors In engineering design, uncertainties in material strength, material dimensions, and loading is often accounted …

## Simulation vs. Machine Learning

Simulation and machine learning are related in that they both revolve around models, but they are very different.  In fact, simulation and machine learning are almost opposites.  We’ll dive into the differences between the two and how they are used. Simulation Characteristics With simulation the model is often known.  In other words, we know how …

## Exposing Project Schedule Risk Hidden in Best Estimates

When we try to estimate a project completion time, often the temptation is to use a best guess completion time for each task, find the critical path, and add up the times.  This method lacks information about the project schedule risk, and if done honestly, often results in a finish time later than the due …

## Monte Carlo Simulation Overview

Monte Carlo simulation has many applications such as risk analysis and engineering design.  It’s often the best method to deal with uncertainty in complex models where an analytical solution would be nearly impossible.  The graphic below provides a Monte Carlo simulation overview. The first step is to identify the uncertain inputs, or random variables.  This …

## Using Monte Carlo Simulation for Purchasing Decisions

Using Monte Carlo simulation for purchasing decisions can allow for overall cost reduction by selecting optimum order quantities.  In this article we will explore how to use simulation to minimize the total cost of a purchased component. When using purchased components, the purchase price is only part of the total cost.  Carrying cost also should …

## Basics of Monte Carlo Simulation

When understood properly, Monte Carlo simulation is an invaluable tool for understanding uncertainty, and ultimately the risks that your project faces.  In this article we will discuss the basics of Monte Carlo simulation. Risk is sometimes a catch-all term that isn’t well-defined.  Monte Carlo simulation can find risks such as the following: What is the …

## Queuing Analysis of a Car Wash

Congestion at a car wash during peak hours can be a source of customer frustration as well as lost revenue.  We will perform a car wash queuing analysis of a proposed in-bay automatic car wash that is part of a convenience store. An in-bay automatic car wash consists of a machine that passes back and …

## Optimization with Simulation Explained

Optimization with simulation sounds ominous, confusing, and generally nasty.  In this article, I will try to explain what all this means and how you can use it to solve some pretty interesting, and tough, problems.  With traditional optimization we change some value so that the output of a model reaches a desired goal, such as …

## Optimization of a Dewar Flask Design

In this article we will perform a Dewar flask design optimization using Simulation Master’s optimizer.  In a previous article we analyzed a Dewar flask’s design that was used to shield down hole electronics from high temperature oil & gas well bores. In that article we had a fixed design, and treated emissivity of the vacuum chamber …